A Humanities Approach to the Psychology of Personhood: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

A Humanities Approach to the Psychology of Personhood

1st Edition

Edited by Jeff Sugarman, Jack Martin


152 pages | 6 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780367278359
pub: 2020-03-31
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In this insightful set of essays, the concept of the psychological humanities is defined and explored. A clear rationale is provided for its necessity in the study and understanding of the individual and identity in a discipline that is largely occupied by empirical studies that report aggregated data and its analysis.

Contributors to this volume are leading scholars in theoretical psychology who believe that psychology must be about persons and their lives. In these essays, they draw from a variety of disciplines that include art, literature, life writing, and history to make a case for the psychological humanities. A final chapter provides a critical commentary on the value of the psychological humanities. It is argued that psychology must draw on the knowledge and practices of the humanities, as well as the sciences and social sciences, in order to attain a greater understanding of personhood.

This book is aimed at upper level undergraduate and postgraduate students and scholars of psychology, particularly theoretical psychology, philosophy of the mind, and those from a humanities background interested in exploring the concept of the psychological humanities.

Table of Contents


Thomas Teo

1. Introduction to a Humanities Approach to the Psychology of Personhood

Jeff Sugarman and Jack Martin

2. The Message in the Medium: Knowing the Psychological through Art

Kathleen Slaney

3. Psychology as Literature: Narrative Knowing and the Project of the Psychological Humanities

Mark Freeman

4. Methods of Life Writing for a Psychology of Persons

Jack Martin

5. Personhood through the Lens of Radical-Transformative Agency

Anna Stetsenko

6. Historical Ontology Exemplifying a Psychological Humanities of Personhood

Jeff Sugarman

7. Critical Commentary

Suzanne Kirschner


About the Editors

Jeff Sugarman is Professor of Education and Psychology at Simon Fraser University. He is a past President of the Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, former Associate Editor of the Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology and New Ideas in Psychology, and co-editor of The Wiley Handbook of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology.

Jack Martin is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Simon Fraser University. His interests are in the theory and history of psychology, social-developmental psychology, educational psychology, and narrative, biographical psychology, with particular emphasis on the psychology of selfhood, human agency, and personhood, and the works of George Herbert Mead and Ernest Becker.

About the Series

Advances in Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology

The founders of psychology — thinkers such as Wundt, Freud, and Spencer — recognized the importance of psychologists formulating for themselves the conceptual foundations of the discipline. These parents of psychology not only did their own theorizing, in cooperation with many others; they realized the significance of constantly re-examining these theories and philosophies, including the theories and philosophies of psychology’s methods.

The Advances in Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology series is dedicated to this examining and re-examining. It identifies the pivotal and problematic non-empirical issues that face the discipline and addresses these issues in the tradition of the theorists of natural science — uncovering the implicit concepts and hidden assumptions of programs of research and strategies of practice to compare them to concepts and assumptions that might be better.

To learn more about the series or to propose a title, please contact Brent Slife ([email protected]) and Christina Chronister ([email protected]).

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